SPOTTING an application in the automotive sector for medical image data analysis has led to a strategic partnership between Automotive technology solutions provider Ebbon Group and Oxford University spin-off Zegami Ltd.
A new business, Ebbon Intelligence, has been formed to roll out an Artificial Intelligence (AI) system to be offered as an option to its moDel damage assessment tools. Ebbon Intelligence will be 80% owned by the Ebbon Group and 20% by Zegami. As part of setting up the business Ebbon Group has purchased the exclusive, perpetual rights to Zegami’s rapidly evolving technology specifically for the automotive sector. The Zegami business was born out of a collaboration led by Roger Noble, Zegami’s CEO and Oxford University scientist Steve Taylor, Zegami’s Chief Scientific Officer.
Zegami was founded as a spin off from the University of Oxford in 2016 after enabling a cancer research project to simultaneously analyse large collections of images and data with machine learning. It’s since successfully grown as an image-based data visualisation platform with backing from several major investors, including Oxford Sciences Innovation.
In the automotive application, the technology is being adapted to compare and contrast a standardized set of images and uses software to look for changes. Typically a driver can follow a template to take a set of images which are then analysed by the AI software using time points to identify changes, such as damage.
Applications in the fleet and leasing sectors include assessing vehicles pre-delivery and collection process, for fleet drivers to monitor their vehicles and for lease hire companies to check vehicles between hires.
The goal is to significantly reduce human error and to make vehicle assessment slicker, more intuitive and simpler for users, says Ebon Group Director, Robert Pilkington.
“Our focus initially will be on vehicle damage systems and identification of changes in condition of vehicles between hires for rental, movements for leasing and for potential applications to commercial vehicles from our DAVIS compliance platform.
“Our moDel technology is not size dependent and scales from small business users to large fleets. Our intention is to introduce initial AI capabilities for selected customers to trial within the coming months and later to add fuller versions of the technology to platforms such as our moDel system and potentially our DAVIS compliance platform. We are sensitive to costs and the pricing will fit sensibly with how our existing platforms scale for small, medium and large fleet sizes, enabling this technology for the wider sector.” he said.
“We also believe the new venture will allow us to identify and exploit many future opportunities, especially in areas such as vehicle and driver risk and safety management.”
Zegami CEO and founder Roger Noble said: “We are really excited to be working with the Ebbon team, who are leading experts in the application of imaging AI to the automotive sector. It perfectly builds on the scientific and medical imaging applications and expertise we have built up over the last five years.”